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Inbox: This is where dreams start to be realized

London is a first for a franchise that’s otherwise done it all

RB AJ Dillon
RB AJ Dillon

Markus from Aurora, CO

Insiders, what's new? Anything?

It's the first day of the rest of your life. Other than that, not so much.

Mike from Lake Villa, IL

When you travel on a road trip, you must always remember to protect your nether region!

It's Larry's world, man. We just appear in it. In six years with, that was easily my favorite two minutes of video we've put on the website. I howled after hearing about coffee-gate. Pure gold.

Joe from Liberty Township, OH

For years some fans have complained the Packers were wasting the Aaron Rodgers' years by not going "all-in." Now that the Packers are pushing money out to field the best team possible while they still have Rodgers (the same?) fans are complaining they aren't trading Rodgers to jump start the rebuild. HOF QBs don't come along very often. I say maximize the roster before the window closes and let the expected 2023/24 big salary cap increases help ease the pain of pushing money out.

The way I see it you have two opinions. The Packers can either do whatever they have to do to win now or slam the window shut themselves and face the future. But just remember – Option B doesn't make the future any more certain than committing yourself to another run with Option A. Everyone has answers until their responses actually matter.

Bill from Whiting, IN

Please explain the fascination with playing in England.

Because the Packers have been around for 103 years and haven't played in England before. It's a first for a franchise that's otherwise done it all. That's special, and in my opinion, something worth "fascinating" over.

Bob from Milton, VT

When will the schedule be completed for the 2022 season? I'm planning on purchasing tickets for some of the Packers' away games and would like to schedule flights and hotels.

It's still a couple months away. The schedule was announced on May 12 last year.

Dave from Huntsville, AL

OT is easy. Just pick up where regulation ends. Want to play for OT, no more kneeling to run out the fourth quarter. Makes the end of regulation more important and exciting.

I always thought it was peculiar how a team that's trailing could tie the game as time expires, win the overtime coin toss, and win the game on a TD without the opposing offense ever touching the ball. This model would level the playing field a bit.

Ken from Arvada, CO

Gents, to prepare for the combine, do you guys do a crash course on the college players that are participating? I don't imagine you'd have much time during the NFL season to watch much college ball and get any degree of familiarity with the top prospects by position. Thanks!

That's how I typically do things. Maybe Spoff has a more organized game plan. I usually know the premier prospects coming out of the college season, but now is when you start to get a better feel for how guys rank at specific positions. The other thing is there's always a Terron Armstead or Byron Jones, whose combine performance puts them on the NFL map. There are names you've never heard of today that ESPN will be talking about a week from now. This is where dreams start to be realized.

Jack from Black Mountain, NC

Is the combine where most undrafted free agents are found by the NFL teams? How does an athlete qualify to participate in the combine?

Not really. In my experience, most undrafted free agents tend to come from smaller schools or are FBS players that lacked a few key measureables and didn't receive a combine invite. NFL teams and GMs can put in requests for specific players to be extended invites, but ultimately, I think the rest falls on Jeff Foster and his staff to handle it.

Reese from Hays, KS

If the GM falls in love with a player during personal interviews and combine workout, does it matter if the reports from the regional scouts don't align with the combine?

Not necessarily. The GM is the GM for a reason. If that person is that convinced about a prospect's upside, it's possible they turn in the card on draft night regardless of what the scouts say. At the same time, it's hard to imagine a scenario where a GM disagrees that strongly with the rest of his brass. Responsible individuals can disagree but the train of thought on prospects is typically in the same genome.

Eric from St. Paul, MN

Wes, I feel like one of the arguments that's always missing in the "pushing out cap hit debate" with regards to the new TV contracts is if the cap does increase as expected, teams not in the salary cap hole can use it all to build in free agency or re-sign their own, whereas a large portion of the cap will be dead money for GB, thus putting them at a competitive disadvantage. I guess I'd still prefer the current year's salary cap be used for players still actually playing on the team.

Yeah, especially with all the talk about how this won't necessarily be a great group of pending free agents. Also, one thing I believe the average fan doesn't realize is the Packers have a lot more control over their cap than they get credit for. Green Bay must get under the cap in the next few weeks but the front office sets its own chessboard. The Packers pull all the strings on restructures, contracts and potentially cuts.

Dar from Mansfield, TX

I know that medicals and interviews are the two most important combine elements for teams, but with the physical tests, is there a particular one that stands out for teams? I know the 40 was once the glamour event, but I'm wondering if perhaps the three-cone drill or something else is a truer measure for a professional scout.

Beyond the more obvious events such as 40 and vertical, the short shuttle seems to be a big one for the Packers. Green Bay has drafted a few running backs and skill-position players who've timed well in that event. Bench isn't the be-all, end-all for linemen but the Packers have done well with top performers there in the past (e.g. Corey Linsley/35 reps).

Jamie from Manchester, UK

After not missing a game for eight years, the Packers are FINALLY coming across the pond! I'm so excited and I hope we get to hang out with you Insiders at some point too! What are you looking forward to most about London?

This'll sound super basic but just going to England would be good enough for me. I haven't been overseas since I went to Germany before my senior year of high school. I met my wife on that same trip. I've heard great things about the hospitality in London from other NFL beat writers. I hope I get to experience it.

Connor from Minnetonka, MN

Wouldn't have an Octoberfest game in Germany been better than London?

The Packers were the only NFL team that hadn't played in London. They weren't going to Germany before the NFL made it 32-for-32 in England.

Mike from Fort Wayne, IN

I was hoping that the Packers would play in the historic Wembley Stadium. Did you have any preference where they played or just happy to go to London finally? The picture of the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium looks modern, so you have that going for you which is splendid. Cherrio!

Wembley seems to be the Jaguars' home away from Jacksonville, so it makes sense how things played out. I also like how the Packers will play in a stadium that was influenced somewhat by Lambeau Field.

Dar from Mansfield, TX

Wes, I see Mike is already thinking about British brewskis, as expected. Have you started research on root beer? I'm asking aloud so that Col, John, or other UK Inboxers might offer suggestions for you.

I may need some help in the sarsaparilla department. But seriously, the best part of this whole deal for me is how Col, John, Stephen O'Brien and all the other devoted UK Packers fans finally get a game on their side of the pond.

Dan from Rothschild, WI

This may have been addressed, so forgive my possible repetitio, but in regards to the Packers playing in London, do season-ticket holders get first crack, or is it up for grabs?

That still needs to get sorted out. Again, this was an NFL decision, not the Packers'. Every team must play an international game every eight years, beginning next season. Obviously, the league didn't want to wait as it related to Green Bay. But the date, opponent and other details will be determined in the months to come.

Scott from Albertville, MN

Which NFL team have the Packers played the least number of times in their history?

Among active NFL teams, Houston Texans (five games), Jaguars (seven) and Baltimore Ravens (seven) are the teams the Packers have played the least.

Matt from Waterloo, IA

Spoff, as a fellow Steak 'n Shake devotee, I am curious to know what your go-to order is? I still think you cannot go wrong with a royal steakburger!

I'm not Spoff but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last week. I prefer shake over steak. In fact, I can only think of one, maybe two times, I've actually eaten a steakburger. It was good. I just like their shakes more. That'll have to hold you over until we get a full report from Spoff tomorrow.

Jeremy from West Allis, WI

"Go find me the needle." Sam Howell. No shade to anyone, but that kid will be special. Hoping Detroit doesn't get him.

Mark it eight, dude.

Robert from Harris, MN

Spoff, your Inbox combine drills are brutal. Grammar and punctuation, forget it. I still have no clue in regard to the cap. Movie references sometimes I get them but mostly they go over my head and as for making them...well. I may do well with the lunch however. If I ever want to get published, I'm going to have to rely on my immeasurables. Or just raw potential.

You're the Inboxer with the motor that never stops, Robert.

Take a look back at photos of Green Bay Packers players during their NFL Scouting Combine appearances.

Rich from Grand Rapids, MI

An infrequently discussed downside to the practice of contract restructuring is the potential loss of future compensatory picks. The more money on a players' cap number that is pushed down the road, the more likely it is the team will find itself having to cut that player before the contract expires. If a contract expires naturally and the player signs elsewhere, that new contract goes into the comp pick formula. Released players' new contracts do not.

Sure, but I'd still rather take that risk than lose a prime Davante Adams now and only get a late-third-round pick next year in exchange for the best receiver in the game.

Dave from Town of Breed, WI

Who put together that Abby Road pic?! It was brilliant! When I first glanced, I actually thought it was the album cover! Big Beatles fan and absolutely loved it!

We have some wonderfully talented people in our department who don't get nearly enough credit. I loved it.

James from Appleton, WI

Wondering why the Packers playing in London announcement didn't use John Brockington, Paul Hornung, George Cumby and Jim Ringo.

Or Paris Len(n)on. The second "n" is silent.

Steve from Dixon, IL

So, is the "h" silent in "Tree Tings?"

It varies from Wisconsinite to Wisconsinite.

Dennis from Parrish, FL

So, we have to fly all the way across an ocean to beat the Jets?

Bro, I flew to Canada to watch the bottom half of the Packers' 90-man roster play an exhibition game on an 80-yard field in Winnipeg. So, I'm fine with whomever the Packers are pitted against in London.

Lori from Heredia, Costa Rica

Wes, thank you for the book recommendation. I just purchased "El Camioncito Azul" as part of a baby shower gift for friends. Hope their little one enjoys it for years to come.

I'm not crying. You're crying.

Ian from Derby, UK

Told my wife that the Pack will be in London this year. Told her it will be expensive...taking my boys too...She said you gotta do it...Is she the best?

Top two, not two.